Nest Success – MRBO determines a successful nest to be a nest that has completed the full nesting cycle through the fledging stage. Another way to state this would be to say that a successful nest is one for which at least one young bird fledges (or leaves the nest).
Data – Factual information (such as measurements or statistics) used as a basis for reasoning, discussion, or calculation.
Methodology – A particular procedure or set of procedures. The methodology employed in an experiment is essential to its success, and bad methodology has spoiled thousands of research projects. So, whenever a piece of research is published in a scientific or medical journal, the researchers always carefully describe their methodology; otherwise, other scientists couldn’t possibly judge the quality of what they’ve done.
Sample Size – Sample size is a count the of individual samples or observations in any statistical setting. For example, in the MRBO nest monitoring study there is currently a sample size of 667 nests. Though a relatively straightforward concept, choice of sample size is a critical determination for a project. Too small a sample yields unreliable results, while an overly large sample demands a good deal of time and resources.
Target Species – Target species are species or species groups specifically chosen for long-term monitoring studies. The target species are chosen based on the goals of the study.